A Guide to the Dixon H. Lewis Papers, 1833-1865
Politician Dixon H. Lewis (1802-1848) graduated from South Carolina College in 1820, and then moved to Autauga County, Alabama where he studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1823. He practiced law in Montgomery and was elected to the Alabama House of Representatives from 1826 to 1828. In 1829, Lewis was elected to the U. S. House of Representative as a States Rights Democrat a position he held until 1844. Governor Benjamin Fitzpatrick then appointed Lewis to a vacant Senate seat, which he held until his death in 1848. Lewis is best known as the heaviest member in Congressional history, weighing as much as 500 pounds.
LEWIS, Dixon Hall, (1802-1848). Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Accessed July 7, 2011.
Photostats of correspondence, legal documents, maps, a muster roll, and miscellaneous documents, the Dixon H. Lewis Papers, 1833-1865, document the personal life, finances, and political career of Alabaman politician Dixon H. Lewis. Letters chronicle Lewis’ business dealings, requests from constituents for jobs and recommendations, and political issues. Deeds and patents of Lewis compose the legal documents, while assorted other papers include a map of Virginia, a muster roll of his son’s Civil War unit, and a copy of W. L. Yancey’s “Address to the People of Alabama.” The collection also includes an original letter addressed to Secretary of the Treasury R.J. Walker, circa 1845-1849, where Lewis discusses the placement of lighthouses along the Florida coast.
This collection is open for research use.
Dixon H. Lewis Papers, 1833-1865, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light project, 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers